Statement by the NGO Abolition Caucus of the NPT Review Conference 2010
Response to the Report of Main Committee I and the Draft Action Plan of Subsidiary Body I
The NGO Abolition Caucus of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference 2010 in general welcomes the Report of Main Committee I: Chairman’s Draft on Substantive Elements and Subsidiary Body I: Chairman’s Draft Action Plan released on Friday, 14 May 2010. The Caucus supports, in particular, the overall emphasis that both documents place on the need to achieve the complete elimination of nuclear weapons as a matter of urgency and within a specified timeframe. The 26-point draft action plan prepared by the Chair of Subsidiary Body I sets out a concrete and detailed
programme for advancing a nuclear-weapon-free world. It reflects a compromise between the overwhelming calls from civil society, together with a majority of countries, for the immediate commencement of negotiations on a Nuclear Weapons Convention and the positions of some States not yet ready to begin such negotiations.
We support the affirmation by the Conference that all States, in particular all States possessing nuclear weapons, need to make special efforts to establish the legal framework required to achieve nuclear disarmament and maintain a world without nuclear weapons. This should include preparatory work, which can begin without delay. We also welcome the acknowledgement by the Conference that UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s five-point proposal on nuclear disarmament, which includes consideration of a Nuclear Weapons Convention or a framework of mutually reinforcing instruments, contributes towards efforts to eliminate nuclear weapons.
The Caucus expresses its general support for Action 6 of the 26-point draft action plan, which calls for consultations not later than 2011 to accelerate concrete progress on nuclear disarmament aimed at the rapid conclusion of negotiations on reductions of all types of nuclear weapons, the removal of nuclear weapons stationed in Europe as part of a nuclear-sharing arrangement, a further diminishment of the role of nuclear weapons in military and security doctrines and policies, the announcement of declaratory policies against the use of nuclear weapons, a reduction in the operational readiness of nuclear weapon systems, the elimination of the risk of accidental or unauthorized use, and the enhancement of transparency measures. We believe that such consultations, rather than being limited to the nuclear-weapon States, should include other States and non-government organizations.
The Caucus also supports the proposal that States parties invite the UN Secretary-General to convene an international conference to consider ways and means to agree on a roadmap for the complete elimination of nuclear weapons within a specified timeframe, including by means of a universal legal instrument. With sufficient political will, this could occur before 2014. At this Review Conference, States parties should offer their support to these specific proposals for action, as well as others contained in the 26-point draft action plan.
Forty years after the entry into force of the Treaty, it is vital that parties adopt an outcome document that puts us clearly on track to nuclear abolition.